Here’s the thing. When I’m with another man I think of you.
I know we always said we were just going to be friends with benefits and part of that deal was that I would keep sleeping with other men, but I almost can’t anymore.
Tonight, when he kissed me, he was too tall, his lips too pliant, his breath wrong.
When I saw his cock I thought, “This isn’t yours.” And when I tasted it I knew for sure.
When he spanked me and I hardly felt it I thought, “That doesn’t feel right.” His hand was too small.
And when he entered me I desperately wished to feel that filled-up, stretched-apart, wholeness I feel when you enter me, but I didn’t. I couldn’t. Because it wasn’t you.
I don’t know what any of this means for us, for what we’re doing together, all I know is that I can’t keep living this farce. I only want to be with you. These other men are collateral damage; I don’t care how they feel about me or how badly they want to be with me. All I want is to be in your arms.
Under you, in you, with you. Sobbing in every way I know how with you.
I go out there and get these other men under the notion it’s for me, but really, it’s for you. I don’t want to scare you. I don’t want to upset this strange balance we’ve created between spending virtually all of our time together, yet resolutely claiming we don’t care for one another more than what our rods and holes can do for one another.
But it’s bullshit.
Tonight, when I was late coming home and I knew he was sitting on our stairs I was afraid you’d see him and know he was there for me. After he left, I was a bundle of nerves that we’d run into you.
And as soon as I was showered and the apartment was clean I texted you. “You home?” I asked. You immediately replied yes.
“Can you come over?”
“Naked in my kitchen. Cooking dinner,” you say.
“Ok. Mondays are just hard for me sometimes.”
“Awwwww,” the iPhone glows back to me.
Then, I hear your voice and my puppy squeals her delight. You’re walking through my apartment shirtless, in shorts and socks. The dog squirms and wiggles around your legs unabashedly elated at your presence. I seethe with jealousy as I watch her open up to you with her honesty. You’re making cheeseburgers and broccoli. Then make a quick exit.
The puppy, confused at your abrupt departure, stands dejectedly staring at the front door. Now I feel for her. I text you that she’s confused. You laugh. Then I say I am too. Are you coming back over? Yes, you say.
And I start this open-hearted discourse with imaginary-you. But, before long you’re back and you sit in the fuck-chair. I close my laptop. I tell you about my strange day, carefully omitting the fact that I erased all traces of a man from my body and my home only minutes before I reached out to you.
I fight tears as I listen to your words. You tell me that you have been avoiding women online.
Because I’m dating someone.
Well, yeah, sorta. I’m an optimist, so it’s a half-truth.
Because I’m not ready to open up to anyone; to put myself out there to be hurt.
I am stupefied.
You weren’t expecting that answer were you? you wonder aloud.
My heart beats riotously in my chest. I don’t know what this means. I mean, look at what I had just written to you. I can’t pretend this isn’t something important to me. I don’t want to anymore. But still, I say nothing of how I’m feeling.
I tell you that I haven’t met anyone that I want to connect with, either. That it’s hard when I have you in my life. You agree. I tell you I don’t think you understand the extent of it; that when I sit across from a man at a table I wonder, “Is he as good as you? Will he make me feel like you do??” You begin to understand better.
And then you say the thing I fear the most about us:
“This can’t go on forever, you know. It could be over in two months.”
I nod. It’s all I can do.
Yes. Yes. Yes. I know this is true. But you have to understand. You have to.
Words come tumbling out of my mouth. I say, “Listen, you’ve helped me in so many ways. You’re kind, sweet, stable, and safe. You’re a good person. I needed someone like you in my life to help me heal. For the first time in so many months I feel a heartbeat again and it’s because of this. What we’re doing here.”
And you answer in kind. You tell me I’ve helped you feel less lonely; I’ve helped you learn to make your apartment a home; to open up emotionally to someone. You say the sex between us is the least important part of what you feel about our friendship.
I tell you it was your cock that has single-handedly helped me heal from my ordeal with Troy. You nod your understanding and beam a smile at me.
You jump up and tease me about your magical cock; flex your beautiful muscles for me and toss me that boyish grin of yours I’d like to bottle and carry with me.
You say that I require very little of you and that it’s been easy to be around me, that I am not a woman you’re familiar with since all your others have demanded everything from you. I feel as though I could fly: you still don’t know how I feel about you. I’ve won this one. I am still safe behind your willingness to not really look at me.
You know — if this is going to end in two months like you think it might and when I was going to finally tell you how I feel about you — then I’m going to wring every second out of the time I have left and not waste my time on men who are only straw men between my legs, because who knows who will be the happier of the two of us when this is all over?
I look forward to seeing you tomorrow at 7:30, my sweet friend.